It All Started With That Third Piece of Chicken

I am not a vegan. I am not a vegetarian. I am not an animal rights activist.

I love meat. I love cheese. I love fast food. I once went a whole month without eating a single piece of fruit.

Until a week ago, my diet was horrible. I overloaded on Halloween candy, potato chips, and deep-fried goodness. Fruits and vegetables were missing from my diet. I ate way more than I should have. Maybe it was psychological, like I was eating emotionally. Maybe I was just really hungry. I knew I was eating too much, but I couldn’t help myself… until, finally, I could.

I decided on Monday that I was going to avoid dairy. I also decided to eat more fruits and veggies. I only ate meat for one meal a day. I haven’t had any meat for the past two days.

I never thought I could go without meat. Even during Lent when, as a Catholic, I don’t eat meat on Fridays, I have had difficulty. I tried to give up dairy once before and was horrified to realize that I ate cheese in some form or another EVERY DAY.

There’s a sense of accomplishment that comes with knowing that, if I put my mind to it, I CAN make better food choices. I can live without dairy. I can live without meat or fish for a few days. I can even live without eggs.

Finding meatless and dairy-free ways to get nutrition has become a fun exercise. I’ve tried new recipes, new food products, and have found a culinary creativity in myself that I didn’t know I had.

So that’s what this blog is about: trying new recipes and foods and overcoming the desire (yes, desire) to have unhealthy foods. It’s only been a week. It’s possible that I could abandon this healthier diet. But I don’t want to! And I’m looking forward to learning how focusing on a plant-based, dairy-free diet will change me physically and emotionally.

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3 thoughts on “It All Started With That Third Piece of Chicken

  1. Congrats on embarking on a healthier lifestyle. Any choices in your diet that include more plant based options are great. Even if you don’t eat solely vegetarian/vegan, you’re one more step in the right direction for a healthier mind and body. You can’t never go wrong adding in more fruits and veggies. I, like you, at one time was a meat lover. There was no way I could go Vegetarian… or so I thought. After adopting a vegetarian lifestyle, I found that the sentiments you expressed are very much like the ones I echoed when one day, I realized how many GREAT tasting options there were in the plant based realm. It was as if meat held me back to a few options then when I started eating vegetarian, I now had a world of options at my fingertips… or at least in my pantry. Enjoy the ride and remember, do what feels right to you! Congrats!

    • Melissa says:

      Thank you so much! I’m looking forward to checking your blog regularly for inspiration and recipes. I love that you wrote about persimmons–that’s one of the fruits I’ll be blogging about soon.

  2. theironclad says:

    It’s been six months since you first posted this. I can say with some certainty that you’ve come a long way. So has this blog. Thank you for giving all of us (readers and authors alike) an opportunity to be part of a life change that is undoubtedly one of the toughest steps. However, I believe that by now you have seen that you are not alone in this endeavor. What’s more is you are not just on your own journey, but this blog is helping others in _their_ journeys as well.

    What I’m trying to say is thank you, and we’re proud of you.

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